One way to stand out in your search for a remote job is to undertake online training. While once viewed with skepticism, enrollment in online skills training has exploded since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. One major course provider, Coursera, reported double enrolment in 2020. The next year they recorded another 32% increase before peaking at 189 million course enrolments.
While the increased availability of online courses and more free time contribute to this trend, there are other factors at play as well. Additional pandemic-related disruptions include an acceleration of technological change and the emergence of new skills being sought after by employers. These changes are leading companies to report that up to 40% of their workers require reskilling. Fortunately, advances in educational technology mean you don’t have to delay upgrading or refreshing your professional skills. Today, reputable training providers offer remote jobs training in a wide range of subjects and price points.
How Advanced Virtual Training Can Help You Get a Job
Training for remote jobs can help jobseekers in a variety of ways, including:
Avoid the Zoom Ceiling
The “zoom ceiling” refers to a tendency for remote workers to be passed over for promotion in favor of in-person colleagues. Remote job training will highlight your commitment to upgrading your skills in areas critical for remote success.
Demonstrate Necessary Technical Skills
No matter what remote job you are looking for, you will need to navigate multiple specialized software programs. Applicants that already have experience in virtual collaboration and project management technologies will jump to the front of the applicant pool.
Improve Communication Skills
Remote work requires advanced and specialized communication skills. Applicable remote job training can demonstrate that you think these skills are important, as well as showing your proficiency.
Learn Organization and Time Management
When you work remotely, there is no one looking over your shoulder. The more you can do, you show a prospective employer that you have the skills to get things done in a remote environment, the better off you are.
Acquire Job Required Courses or Certifications
Many positions require the completion of certain courses or certifications due to government regulations or industry standards. If you know you are missing any of these, in many instances, these courses are available online.
Where to Find Online Skills Training Resources
Before signing up for remote job training, remember that employers are as mindful of your online course provider as they are of your proactiveness in pursuing professional development. Below is a listing of reputable websites where you can start your search for an online course provider.
Co-founded by Harvard and MIT, EdX is an online learning platform that offers 3,600+ online courses from more than 160 institutions, including NYU and Yale, as well as global companies like IBM. Courses are available to audit for free. However, if graded assignments, certificates of completion, and unlimited access to the course information are important, you will have to pay a fee. Fees vary by course, program, and institution.
Hosting more than 4,000 courses, Coursera is similar to EdX and hosts courses from 275+ reputable universities such as Stanford, Yale, and well-known companies, including Google. As with EdX, courses are available for free, with grades and certificates available for a fee.
The British version of Coursera and EdX is Future Learn. Operated by The Open University and SEEK, this learning platform also offers a wide range of online courses from leading universities and organizations, including Amazon and Microsoft. If you have a lot of learning to do, this platform offers a monthly subscription to complete unlimited short courses for $27.99 per month.
Udemy is an online learning and teaching marketplace with over 204,000 courses and 54 million students. Courses in a vast array of subjects are created and similar to LinkedIn Learning, they are presented by real-world experts. Costs vary depending on the course but are generally quite affordable, and the site hosts frequent sales as well.
Advanced Learning Interactive Systems Online, or ALISON, is an online education platform with 4,000+ courses and 25 million learners. Online courses are created by subject matter experts and are free to complete, but you have to pay for certificates and diplomas. Founded in 2007, ALISON is one of the oldest online providers of remote job training and serves as a model for many others that operate today.
The LinkedIn Learning platform offers over 16,000 courses in business, technology and creative skills taught by industry experts. So, while the courses may be useful and effective, they are not accredited. If you have a LinkedIn profile, the landing page displays course options based on your profile information. This service is available exclusively by a subscription fee of $26.99 per month.
Similar to Google Skillshop, Microsoft Learn is a free, online training platform that provides interactive learning, primarily for Microsoft technical products such as Azure, Windows, and SQL Server. In addition to being free, Microsoft’s certificates are accredited and recognized by employers. It should be noted that instructor-led training is also provided, but this training is fee-based.
If many of the jobs you’re applying for require expertise in Google software and online tools, check out Google Skillshop. This is a free online learning center that provides in-depth instruction on Google Ads, Google Analytics, Google Marketing Platform, or Waze. You’ll also get a free certificate of completion.
An example of a more subject-specialized online training platform is HubSpot Academy. HubSpot provides access to industry-recognized inbound marketing, sales, and customer service/support training. The platform offers both certifications and singular topic courses completely free of charge, including certificates of completion.
Memrise is a web and mobile-friendly application that provides language training. Using videos with native speakers, the app helps you quickly pick up a working knowledge of another language. Progress is tracked by smart algorithms that will identify your current learning level and challenge you with appropriate assignments. Courses can be found for 23 languages and while introductory lessons are free, more advanced training requires a “pro” account.
Another mobile-friendly provider is GoSkills that delivers bite-size lessons from expert instructors. The focus at GoSkills is on practical, career-related skills. You earn a verified certificate of achievement for every course you complete, and you can also earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs) or Professional Development Units (PDUs). This is a subscription-based service.
Udacity is an online technology training provider that works with industry-leading companies to co-create course content that teaches in-demand skills and core competencies. Examples of their programs include cybersecurity, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence. A subscription is $399 per month, and a “nanodegree” or short, 3-5 month training program will run you between $1,000 and $2,000.
If you’re looking to finish, add, or remediate high school or college courses, or study for entrance exams such as the GMAT, LSAT, or SAT, then Khan Academy is the best option. This non-profit organization aims to provide free, world-class education for everyone, so the price is right too.
Pandemic-related disruptions are making ongoing skills training a necessary part of the job search. However, the increase in the number and type of online training providers is making remote job training easier and more budget-friendly than ever before. With such a wide variety of subjects and course providers, as well as many free and low-cost opportunities, what are you waiting for? Start your online skills training today!
What do you think are essential skills for a remote worker? How did enhancing your remote abilities help you find a job? Connect with Virtual Vocations on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube to share your thoughts and tips. We’d love to hear from you!
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